Albania signs €100 million loan with EIB for EU-financed Vorë-Hani i Hotit railway line electrification

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The European Investment Bank (EIB) announced on Wednesday (20 March) that EIB Global has signed a 100 million-euro loan with Albania under a Team Europe financial package for the modernisation and electrification of a 120-kilometre railway line from Vorë in central Albania to Hani i Hotit on the border with Montenegro.

“This project is an excellent demonstration of the strong partnership under the Team Europe initiative. Our joint efforts will strengthen the connection between Albania, the region and the European Union, while promoting sustainable mobility that lays the foundation for a smart, resilient, safe and inclusive rail network in the country and the region. As the EU climate bank, the EIB is fully engaged in supporting the development and modernisation of the railway sector in Albania and the whole region,” said EIB Vice-President Kyriacos Kakouris, who is responsible for the Bank’s activities in the Western Balkans.

The Team Europe financing package for this project comprises the 100 million-euro EIB loan finalised today, an approved 126 million-euro EU investment grant channelled via the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) and a 98.75 million-euro loan from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD).

“As Albania and the region move forward on their path to EU integration, people can already experience concrete benefits of this process. The EU-funded Vore-Hani i Hotit railway line will bring faster and safer travel for both cargo and passengers along the Adriatic coast. It will boost connectivity for people and trade in Albania, in the Western Balkans region and with the EU. Moreover, it will also contribute to the advancement of Albania’s green transition,” said Chargé d’affaires of the EU Delegation to Albania André Rizzo.

The project will enable the rail track electrification, the reconstruction of 12 railway stations, the introduction of a new telecommunication and signalling system, and safety improvements. These will enable traffic speeds of up to 120 km/h, increasing the efficiency and capacity of passenger and freight rail transport. As an extension of the Core TEN-T Mediterranean Corridor, the Vorë-Hani i Hotit railway line connects Tirana with Podgorica and is the only railway link between Albania and the rest of Europe.

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